While I love 50m free, the 100m is crucial, the discipline that delivers hardware in the most exciting races of the Olympic Games–the 4×100 freestyle and medley relays.
Nathan Adrian has won gold in the last three Olympic Games. He has 32 international medals, 20 of them gold. He’s been incredibly consistent, especially in the blue ribbon event, the 100 meter freestyle.
Focusing on 100m free in U.S. swimming history, how does Adrian compare to sprinting greats like Matt Biondi and Gary Hall Jr.? Biondi (11 Olympic medals) and Hall (10 Olympic medals) tops Nathan (8 Olympic medals) on medal count, but, in my opinion, Nathan’s been more consistent in the 100m free. It’s that third trip to the Olympic stage where Adrian has the edge, getting on the podium and playing a big role on the relays.
Is Adrian the most consistent 100-man in U.S. history? What do you think?
Is the comparison even fair? Biondi suffered from a lack of NGB financial support during his era.
Should Jason Lezak be on the list? He made the Olympic podium once in the 100m free, winning bronze, but he was a factor on relays across 2000, 04′, ’08 and ’12, and, of course, his ’08 anchor is the greatest swim of all-time. Maybe Lezak is the most consistent 100-man in U.S. history.
I’m Team Adrian, but I think a lot readers will challenge my argument.
Lastly, Caeleb Dressel? Does anyone want to look into the crystal ball on this guy? Where’s he going to be by 2024? I only ask for fun because I did not predict his 2017 Worlds performance.
This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by SwimOutlet.com. Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of SwimSwam.com, a Swimming News website.